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Sydney to Lord Howe Island, Ball’s Pyramid, Elizabeth Reef, Middleton Reef & Norfolk Island Ocean Passage Cruising

Sydney, Australia
  • Event date: 15/10/2022
  • Event end: 29/10/2022
  • When: OCT-DEC
  • Duration: 2 weeks

Sydney to Lord Howe Island, Ball’s Pyramid, Elizabeth Reef, Middleton Reef & Norfolk Island / 1,050 Nm / 14 Days / CAT 0 Expedition

The Category 0 ocean passage from Sydney, New South Wales, Australia to Balls Pyramid, Lord Howe Island, Elizabeth Reef, Middleton Reef and finally Norfolk Island is a true explorers expedition. We depart Sydney and head 420nm ENE to Balls Pyramid, stretching almost 500m out of the ocean, before altering course for the 13nm leg to Lord Howe Island, where we will tie up on a mooring in the lagoon for 2 nights on the western side and take the opportunity to swim, cycle, hike, relax and enjoy everything this stunning island has to offer.

When we depart Lord Howe Island, we’ll sail 100nm north to Elizabeth Reef. This 6nm long reef rises up from the 3,000 metres deep Tasman Seafloor and is visible at low tide. We will time our anchorage inside the platform reef for low tide so we can go ashore and explore the reef before it’s covered again at high tide. Imagine standing on a reef that’s 300nm off the East Coast of Australia with nothing but the Tasman Sea in every direction! When we depart Elizabeth Reef we’ll head 30nm north for a circumnavigation of the notorious Middleton Reef, one of two the southernmost platform reefs in the world. It’s claimed more than 70 vessels in the past 100 years with some wrecks still visible.

The final leg is to the stunning South Pacific jewel: Norfolk Island where we will anchor and go ashore, clear Australian Customs and take a tour of the island and take in the rich history dating back to the early convict inhabitants. This expedition will have some unique sights including seeing shipwrecks visible on top of the Middleton Reef, turquoise blue lagoons, amazing sea life and the steep Jurassic like cliff faces of Lord Howe Island.

With nothing but an open ocean from the bottom of Australia/New Zealand to Antarctica; 1,000nm to the south, the ocean swell can build in height with no land to stop it for more than 2,500nm until it hits the shores of the Pacific Islands. There are many reasons why more people have climbed Mount Everest than have sailed across the Tasman Sea and the rapidly changing nature of the Tasman Sea’s weather system is one of them.

Our skippers have sailed across the Tasman Sea twelve times (two solo), the keys to success include waiting for the weather window, downloading live weather en-route and sailing a vessel that’s easy to mode for all wind and swell conditions. Despite its reputation for extreme conditions, the Tasman Sea is easy to cross safely if you stay clear of the winter storm season (late May to early August) and wait for a safe weather window. It’s an absolute bucket-list voyage and a hugely satisfying personal achievement.

Secure your place on the crew with a 20% deposit.

Sydney to Norfolk Island
Difficulty Level:
Medium
Price:

8750 $ AUD

Sydney to Lord Howe Island, Ball’s Pyramid, Elizabeth Reef, Middleton Reef & Norfolk Island / 1,050 Nm / 15 – 29 Oct 2022

You can fly directly into Sydney on or before the 15th of October 2022. You are welcome to stay onboard from the date you arrive in Sydney, but if you plan to arrive prior to the 15th of October 2022, you may need to arrange accommodation ashore, but check with me first. When you arrive we’ll familiarise you with the yacht, systems and safety equipment and you will join us for a crew dinner ashore.

Our crew will officially assemble from the 16th onwards and we will aim to depart (subject to weather) on the 17th of October, when we will clear Customs and then depart Sydney and sail ENE towards Balls Pyramid, then onto Lord Howe Island for a 2-day stopover. Next, we’ll head to Elizabeth Reef for a brief stop to go ashore, then a sail past of Middleton Reef before heading east to Norfolk Island where we’ll anchor and clear customs after going ashore. You have the opportunity to stay a few extra days on the island if you decide to arrange accommodation ashore. You can stay onboard for the first 2 nights when we arrive in Norfolk Island and depart out of Norfolk Island Airport on or after the 30th of October 2022.

Here’s what you will experience onboard:

  • Hoisting, trimming and reefing both upwind (main, genoas, and jibs) and downwind sails (poled out headsails, spinnakers, gennakers and code 0’s (subject to weather).
  • Acting as watch captain (day and night), helming, navigating, checking the weather and monitoring AIS and radar and for both traffic and rain squalls.
  • Downloading and analysing the latest weather forecasts and calculating the best route to the destination.
  • Navigating, hazard identification, entering waypoints and calculating updated ETA’s.
  • Routine checks of bilges, engine, electrical systems, sails and hardware for preventative maintenance.
  • Watch roster planning, matching responsibility to experience, crew management and communication
  • Familiarisation of all safety procedures, sail planning, storm preparation planning and abandon ship procedures.
  • Training in the use of PDF’s (Personal Flotation Devices), PLB’s (Personal Locator Beacons), safety tethers, dan buoy’s, storm drogue, liferaft and any other equipment required to ensure you remain safe in all conditions.
  • Advice on how to take responsibility for managing clothing, hydration, sleep and nutrition to maintain your health and well being aboard.
  • Planning our arrival and route to safe harbour including timing with daylight (if required), weather factors, navigational hazards, communications/customs and sail/motor arrival plan.
  • Multi-day, offshore passage making 24/7 on a significant Category 1 offshore passage

Read the blog articles published by Lena Padukova after her 2019 Trans-Tasman on Ocean Gem.

Read our blog article of the Trans Tasman Crossing from Southport, Auckland to Opua & Auckland, New Zealand done on Ocean Gem in March 2019

Lord Howe Island information

Your crew package includes:

  • all meals onboard
  • crew meals ashore in Southport, Lord Howe Island and in Auckland
  • accommodation onboard
  • your Ocean Sailing Expeditions crew shirt
  • marina fees
  • the use of a PFD (personal floatation device), PLB (personal locator beacon), and a safety tether
  • your bedding, a pillow and towel is also included along with suncream.

Your crew package excludes:

  • accommodation ashore
  • flights and transport to and from departure and arrival ports and visas
  • alcohol
  • toiletries
  • clothing and wet weather gear

You will need to complete a 2-day Sea Safety and Survival Training Course or equivalent Category 1 Course at least 2 months prior.

Its always recommended that you book flights with date flexibility in case of unforeseen changes due to weather or schedules. Accommodation options if you want to stay ashore either side of trip: AirBNBBooking.comWotif & HomeAway.

Boats
Program 2022

Sydney to Lord Howe Island, Ball’s Pyramid, Elizabeth Reef, Middleton Reef & Norfolk Island / 1,050 Nm / 15 – 29 Oct 2022

You can fly directly into Sydney on or before the 15th of October 2022. You are welcome to stay onboard from the date you arrive in Sydney, but if you plan to arrive prior to the 15th of October 2022, you may need to arrange accommodation ashore, but check with me first. When you arrive we’ll familiarise you with the yacht, systems and safety equipment and you will join us for a crew dinner ashore.

Our crew will officially assemble from the 16th onwards and we will aim to depart (subject to weather) on the 17th of October, when we will clear Customs and then depart Sydney and sail ENE towards Balls Pyramid, then onto Lord Howe Island for a 2-day stopover. Next, we’ll head to Elizabeth Reef for a brief stop to go ashore, then a sail past of Middleton Reef before heading east to Norfolk Island where we’ll anchor and clear customs after going ashore. You have the opportunity to stay a few extra days on the island if you decide to arrange accommodation ashore. You can stay onboard for the first 2 nights when we arrive in Norfolk Island and depart out of Norfolk Island Airport on or after the 30th of October 2022.

Tips

Here’s what you will experience onboard:

  • Hoisting, trimming and reefing both upwind (main, genoas, and jibs) and downwind sails (poled out headsails, spinnakers, gennakers and code 0’s (subject to weather).
  • Acting as watch captain (day and night), helming, navigating, checking the weather and monitoring AIS and radar and for both traffic and rain squalls.
  • Downloading and analysing the latest weather forecasts and calculating the best route to the destination.
  • Navigating, hazard identification, entering waypoints and calculating updated ETA’s.
  • Routine checks of bilges, engine, electrical systems, sails and hardware for preventative maintenance.
  • Watch roster planning, matching responsibility to experience, crew management and communication
  • Familiarisation of all safety procedures, sail planning, storm preparation planning and abandon ship procedures.
  • Training in the use of PDF’s (Personal Flotation Devices), PLB’s (Personal Locator Beacons), safety tethers, dan buoy’s, storm drogue, liferaft and any other equipment required to ensure you remain safe in all conditions.
  • Advice on how to take responsibility for managing clothing, hydration, sleep and nutrition to maintain your health and well being aboard.
  • Planning our arrival and route to safe harbour including timing with daylight (if required), weather factors, navigational hazards, communications/customs and sail/motor arrival plan.
  • Multi-day, offshore passage making 24/7 on a significant Category 1 offshore passage

Read the blog articles published by Lena Padukova after her 2019 Trans-Tasman on Ocean Gem.

Read our blog article of the Trans Tasman Crossing from Southport, Auckland to Opua & Auckland, New Zealand done on Ocean Gem in March 2019

Lord Howe Island information

Inclusions

Your crew package includes:

  • all meals onboard
  • crew meals ashore in Southport, Lord Howe Island and in Auckland
  • accommodation onboard
  • your Ocean Sailing Expeditions crew shirt
  • marina fees
  • the use of a PFD (personal floatation device), PLB (personal locator beacon), and a safety tether
  • your bedding, a pillow and towel is also included along with suncream.
Exclusions

Your crew package excludes:

  • accommodation ashore
  • flights and transport to and from departure and arrival ports and visas
  • alcohol
  • toiletries
  • clothing and wet weather gear

You will need to complete a 2-day Sea Safety and Survival Training Course or equivalent Category 1 Course at least 2 months prior.

Its always recommended that you book flights with date flexibility in case of unforeseen changes due to weather or schedules. Accommodation options if you want to stay ashore either side of trip: AirBNBBooking.comWotif & HomeAway.

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